Travelling alone, dubbed “solo travelling” across the blogosphere, has taken the tourism industry by storm with more and more people eager to venture into the unknown in search of meaning and purpose. The experience, increasingly popular among millennials and generation Z, provides an exhilarating mix of adventure, disconnection, empowerment, and self-development.
Due to its COVID-friendly nature, solo travel has seen a surge in popularity during the pandemic. Not only is this due to health and social distancing concerns, but also a result of shifting profiles as older demographics, who are more likely to travel in groups, currently travel less to avoid viral infection. In numbers, the average age of travellers in 2019 was 50; by the end of 2020, the average age dropped to 38. With over 50% of millennials stating that they would rather go solo, this form of travel continues to present promising business opportunities worldwide.
Often called the ‘safe haven’ of the region, Jordan is considered to be one of the safest destinations for solo travellers. This, coupled with rising demand for exotic experiences in developing countries, offers a valuable opportunity for tour operators in Jordan to consider and attract a new niche of travellers.
LI, with support from the Embassy of the Netherlands in Jordan, works on diversifying Jordanian tourism offerings to stay in line with new travel trends: one of which is solo travel. Through our Curated Experiences project, LI trains experience providers in areas like hospitality and communications to ensure solo travellers feel comfortable, welcome, and safe. We also work on marketing and outreach to speak to the modern traveller, understanding needs, interests, and concerns, and thereby attracting more solo tourism.
The project will also consider female solo travel, which has gained a lot of traction in recent years with women looking to challenge social and cultural conditioning and gain a sense of freedom, independence, and empowerment. Solo women, however, are more vulnerable targets in a foreign country, which is why we added an anti-sexual harassment component to ensure the safety and comfort of travellers in Jordan.
As COVID changes the face of tourism, we must look for alternative means to help the sector rebuild and recover. With solo travelling seeing a steady increase in popularity, LI helps Jordan jump on the bandwagon and supports related businesses to ensure visitors are received, treated, and served well – the proper Jordanian way, and the only way we know how.